“Wicked Paris” Lecture Opens Toulouse-Lautrec Exhibition at the Clark February 1

For Immediate Release

January 13, 2009

“Wicked Paris: Toulouse-Lautrec Invents the Fin de Siècle,” a provocative opening lecture for the exhibition Toulouse-Lautrec and Paris, will be held on Sunday, February 1, at the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute. S. Hollis Clayson, professor of art history at Northwestern University, will present this free lecture at 3 pm.

Toulouse-Lautrec (1864–1901) was considered “the quintessential chronicler of Paris, as it is understood by those who come here seeking bright lights and wild pleasures,” as a prominent critic wrote not long after the artist’s death. “Wicked Paris” will examine Toulouse-Lautrec and the lively milieu in which he cultivated his unforgettable style: Paris at the end of the nineteenth century.

Dr. Clayson, a former Clark Fellow and the 2005 Robert Sterling Clark Visiting Professor for the Williams College Graduate Program in the History of Art, has published extensively on diverse aspects of nineteenth-century French art, with a particular focus on Paris. Her first book, Painted Love: Prostitution in French Art of the Impressionist Era, was republished by Getty Publications in 2003.

Vibrant and racy Parisian nightlife of the late nineteenth century will be on view at the Clark this winter. Toulouse-Lautrec and Paris, an exhibition of over eighty remarkable oil paintings, posters, photographs, drawings, and lithographs, marks the first time in over fifteen years that the Clark will show nearly its entire extraordinary collection of works by the great French painter and printmaker Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864–1901). Toulouse-Lautrec and Paris will revel in Montmartre’s raucous streets, cabarets, theaters and circuses—venues frequented by modern artists seeking inspiration from the world of entertainment at the turn of the century. The exhibition will showcase Toulouse-Lautrec’s magnificent capacity for both quiet intimacy and theatrical flair in a variety of media. Toulouse-Lautrec and Paris will be on view February 1 through April 26, 2009.

The Clark is located at 225 South Street in Williamstown. The galleries are open Tuesday through Sunday from 10 am to 5 pm (daily in July and August). Admission is free November 1 through May 31. Admission June 1 through October 31 is $12.50 for adults, free for children 18 and younger, members, and students with valid ID. For more information, call 413-458-2303 or visit www.clarkart.edu.

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